Tim Henman has urged the Lawn Tennis Association to "change the base of their pyramid" in a bid to get more youngsters playing the game.
With Great Britain recently losing to Lithuania in the Davis Cup - they now face a July play-off against Turkey to avoid relegation to the lowest tier of the competition - much of the focus has been on the dearth of talent at the top level. But former world number four Henman feels targeting the grass roots should be the immediate concern.
Speaking after announcing his return to competitive tennis at the AEGON Masters Tennis event at the Royal Albert Hall in November, Henman told Radio Five Live: "There has been a lot of focus on Davis Cup but, for me, that should be the icing on the cake. We need to look at the grass roots, the clubs, the tennis in schools. There is a massive amount of money put into those areas but we need to target them more strongly."
He added: "I am sure the LTA will come back and say they are spending 50% of their money on the grass roots but for me they need to spend more.
"We have some fantastic facilities and some very good coaches, but if we haven't got any players what can they do?
"We need to change the base of our pyramid to make that a lot better."
Henman retired from the ATP Tour midway through 2007 and is relishing his return on the seniors tour.
"It (the event) is in its 14th year now and they have got a pretty strong field," he added.
"I am just looking forward to playing some tennis again in slightly less pressurised circumstances."